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Wesley remained in Georgia for only six months before returning to England, where he would compose the words to over 6,500 hymns and also with brother John Wesley help organize the Methodist Church.
Charles Wesley died Mar. 29, 1788 in London.
1834 Gov. Wilson Lumpkin signed an act chartering the Georgia Methodists Conference Manual Labor School, which would be located at Oxford, Ga. Two years later, the school would gain a new charter as Emory College. In 1915 it changed its name to Emory University and in 1919 the campus was relocated in Atlanta, Georgia.
1857 Gov. Joseph E. Brown signed legislation creating Pierce and Milton counties.
Milton County, Georgia's 121st, was created for portions of Cherokee, Cobb, and Forsyth counties, and named for former Georgia secretary of state John Milton.
By an act of July 30, 1931, Milton County became part of Fulton County effective Jan. 1, 1932.
1865 The Thirteenth Amendment – which outlawed slavery – officially became part of the U.S. Constitution.
1866 Gov. Charles J. Jenkins signed an act creating a state Superintendent of Public Education and Georgia Schools. Duties of the office included submitting plans to the General Assembly for the "management and improvement and better organization of the Georgia schools" and to "generally superintend the operation of this system of Georgia schools, and see that the laws in relation thereto are enforced."
1886 Baseball great Ty Cobb was born in Banks County, Georgia. Cobb is recognized as one of the premiere baseball players of all time. He reached the major leagues at age eighteen, with the Detroit Tigers. Embittered from the hazing he received at the hands of the older players, Cobb became a loner with a fierce determination to excel in every phase of the game. Excel he did, batting over .300 for twenty-three consecutive years, three of which he hit over .400. His style of play – extremely aggressive and intimidating – made him one of the most feared and hated players in the game. But his talent could not be denied; in 1936 he was the leading vote-getter among the first five players inducted into professional baseball's Hall of Fame. Cobb became a wealthy man through wise investments of his baseball earnings, primarily his investment in home state Coca-Cola stock. After retiring for some time in Nevada, he returned to north Georgia, where much of his fortune was donated to charities. He died in 1961, one day short of his seventy-fifth birthday.
1894 Gov. William Atkinson approved a resolution proposing a constitutional amendment to make the office of State School Commissioner elected by the people instead of appointed by the governor.
1897 Jazz pianist, arranger, and conductor Fletcher "Smack" Hamilton Henderson, Jr. was born in Cuthbert, Georgia. He traveled to New York, where he played piano and served as musical director for W.C. Handy's music publishing business. Henderson soon was accompanying Bessie Smith and Ethel Waters on records, and by 1923 he had his own orchestra. His innovative jazz arrangements led to the birth of swing music, and he is considered one of the most influential pioneers in big band jazz music. Henderson died in New York City on Dec. 28, 1952.
1901 William Flank Perry died in Bowling Green, Kentucky.
Born March 12, 1823 in Jackson County, Georgia, he was a teacher, superintendent of education, college professor before the war. In 1862, Perry enlisted as a private in the 44th Alabama. He advanced rapidly to the rank of colonel by September 1862, colonel in 1863, and finally brigadier general in Feb. 1865. Perry fought in the battles of Second Manassas, Sharpsburg, Gettysburg, Chickamauga, Wilderness, Spotsylvania, Cold Harbor, and Petersburg. After the war, he returned to teaching.
1917 Actor, director, and screen writer Ossie Davis was born in Cogdell, Georgia. He would go on to appear in over 50 movies. He died in Miami, FL February 4, 2005.
1961 Martin Luther King Jr. was released from jail after reaching an oral agreement with the Albany city commissioners that the city would desegregate the train and bus facilities in return for the demonstrators' ending their boycott and protests. The commissioners later reneged on the agreement.
1971 Lawyer and amateur golfing great Bobby Jones died and was buried in Atlanta's Oakland Cemetery. His grave site is a popular attraction for golfers, who frequently leave golf balls at his headstone.
1972 Georgia Tech beat Iowa State 31-30 in the Liberty Bowl.
1990 The Atlanta Braves signed free agent shortstop Rafael Belliard.
1997 Ground breaking ceremonies were held in Albany, Georgia for the renovation of the Old Mount Zion Church into the Mount Zion Albany Civil Rights Movement Museum.
Georgia cities and towns first incorporated by acts approved on Dec. 18:
1817 Sandersville (Washington County)
1834 Cumming (Forsyth County)
1884 Frazier (Pulaski County)
In Their Own Words on This Day . . .
1864 From Columbus, Ga., John Banks wrote about the status of Sherman's March to the Sea, as well as the location of three of his seven sons who fought for the Confederacy:
Source: John Banks, Autobiography of John Banks, 1797 - 1870 (Austell, Ga.: privately printed by Elberta Leonard, 1936), p. 35.
For more, see This Week in Georgia Civil War History.
1864 General Sherman wrote a letter to Grant outlining his plans to attack Savannah. In his memoirs he wrote:
Source: Mills Lane (ed.), Marching Through Georgia: William T. Sherman's Personal Narrative of His March Through Georgia (New York: Arno Press, 1978), p.177.
1894 Until the 1970s, Atlanta's Lakewood Park Fairgrounds hosted the annual Southeastern Fair. Today, it is principally known for concerts by popular music entertainers. But it originally began with a different purpose, as noted in this article published in the Dec. 18, 1894 Atlanta Constitution:
Source: Franklin M. Garrett, Atlanta and Environs: A Chronicle of Its People and Events (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1966 reprint of 1954 original volume), Vol. II, p. 299.
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